Introduction

Power Efficiency Guide

Ultimate Guide to Power Efficiency

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The Executive Director of the International Energy Agency (IEA), Nobuo Tanaka, underlined the significance of the "huge energy challenges" facing the rapidly growing economies, particularly those of India and China. Given the strengthening science behind the human influence on climate change [1], he also pointed the need to develop a global response to meet this challenge and find ways to mitigate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from these growing economies. Among developing nations, China, India and Mexico were large emitters of carbon dioxide (CO2) in 2005 [2]. While China and India's power sectors are dominated by coal-fired power generation, the Mexican electricity sector, in contrast, relies heavily on fuel oil and natural gas.

In this context, it is instructive to view total GHG emissions within the IPAT1 framework, where Impact is GHG emissions, P is total population, and Affluence is gross domestic product per capita. Technology signifies carbon emission intensity (emissions per dollar of gross domestic product). Economic growth, which broadly increases per-capita consumption, is essential to improve the quality of life. Hence, the key factors by which emissions can be reduced are population growth and the emission intensity of the economy. In this chapter, we focus on the role of power generation technologies in three developing countries - China, India, and Mexico - for managing their GHG emissions. Emissions from power generation play a large role in GHG emissions from these economies.

As a modern energy carrier, electricity is a critical component of energy supply in any country. Thus, the availability of, and access to electricity, is an important element in the effort to increase standard of living. Hence, we present the current status of the power generation sector, the prospect for future growth, and its implications for GHG emissions in China, India, and Mexico. These three countries pose a challenge for the whole world, for the way in which they meet their energy challenges will have long-term ramifications for the health of the entire planet. The economies of China and India are particularly challenging, as both rely heavily on coal-fired generation. The evolving portfolio of generation technologies in these two countries will play a significant role in their contribution to the global emissions of GHGs. Mexican power sector has undergone significant structural shift in the

1 The terms in IPAT identity or equation, originally coined by Ehrlich and Holdren [3], stand for Impact = Population x Affluence x Technology.

World OECD China India Mexico USA

Fig. 11.1 Per capita electricity consumption (MWh/person) (2006) (Source: IEA [4])

World OECD China India Mexico USA

Fig. 11.1 Per capita electricity consumption (MWh/person) (2006) (Source: IEA [4])

recent past, which has reduced its GHG emission intensity from the power sector, but total emissions have continued to grow due to increased energy consumption. Further, energy security concerns have dictated that coal, a carbon-intensive fuel, be considered an important part of the future fuel-mix in Mexico.

In spite of the high growth in their generation capacity, the per capita electricity consumption of these developing countries is still low, when compared to that of developed economies and the world average electricity consumption (Fig. 11.1). Per capita electricity consumption in India is less than one-fifth of the global average, and about one-sixteenth of that of members of organization of economic cooperation and development (OECD) countries. Per capita electricity consumption in China and Mexico are similar, and are less than one-fourth of that of OECD countries [4]. To sustain economic growth and to continue to improve the quality of life of its people, the developing countries would have to undertake massive efforts to add significant amount of generation capacity in the medium to long term.

While there are some common elements among the three countries, the structure of the power sector and socio-economic drivers of demand for electricity are very different in these economies. For example, electrification rate in China (~99%) and Mexico (~95%) is high, whereas it is low in India (~62%).

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